What’s All The Hype About Taping and Cupping?

In the past month we have all seen world athletes with colorful tape and round bruises on their bodies.  What is this all about and will those methods help me with my aches and pains?

The colorful tape is Kinesio® Tex Tape. This rehabilitative tape is used in the Kinesio Taping® Method that helps facilitate a natural healing method for the body. The tape can be applied in hundreds of ways in order to reduce pain and inflammation, promote good circulation, provide support and stability to muscles and joints, prevent injury, optimize performance and much more. Kinesio Tape has been proven to provide a positive effect on the body’s circulatory system, skin, lymphatic system, fascia, tendons, muscles and joints during preventative, rehabilitative and chronic phases of an injury.

The round bruises seen on the athletes’ bodies are caused from cupping therapy. Cupping therapy, a type of deep-tissue massage, is an ancient treatment used to help with pain, inflammation, blood flow and relaxation. Cupping therapy may be all the rage right now, but it is not new. The Egyptians used cupping therapy as far back as 1,550 B.C.

The cups used in Cupping Therapy may be made of glass, bamboo, earthenware or silicone. Cupping can be done either wet or dry. The therapist places the cup upside down on the patients skin. The cup creates a vacuum lifting the skin and expanding the blood vessels. The cup is left in place for around three minutes.

There have not been many scientific studies done on Cupping Therapy. But the research that has been done has shown that Cupping Therapy may be effective when coupled with other treatments. Cupping is fairly safe, as long as a trained professional performs it.

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